Fall in homeowners in arrears on mortgages

THERE has been a fall in the numbers of homeowners in arrears on their mortgages. Despite the fall in the numbers behind on their payments, the main domestic banks have yet to restructure three out of four distressed mortgages.

Figures out this afternoon from the Department of Finance show that there are now just short of 78,500 residential mortgage accounts were three months or more behind on payments at the end of March.

This is a fall of 1,500 from February.

The Department of Finance said the six main banks have put in place close to 14,600 permanent repayment plans for residential mortgage accounts that were in arrears in March.

This was actually lower than the figure for February, the report from the department shows.

Close to 58,000 residential mortgage accounts that are three months or more in arrears have yet to have payments deals put in place. This represents three out of four mortgages that are in arrears for three months or more.

Banks have been moving away from temporary restructures for those in mortgage trouble, like interest only, and offering to split mortgages and provide arrears capitalisation, where the arrears are added to the overall home-loan debt.

The figures outline the arrears and the number of permanent repayment deals put in place by AIB, Bank of Ireland, Permanent TSB, ACC, KBC Ireland and Ulster Bank.